Book Impressions: Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman

Neverwhere

On Goodreads, I give 5 stars out of 5 to Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman.

I had no idea magical realism could be so much fun! All of it! Every last word.

Welcome to my new favorite book. I have now read several works by Neil Gaiman (including American Gods), and I am well on my way to becoming an adoring fan.

This entertaining story touches on many concepts such as trust, loyalty, good versus evil, and perseverance. These are typical in many books, I know. But Gaiman weaves them into such an amazing tale and in such a unique and unforgettable way. I’m giddy!

Additionally, the Christian references and allegory are there for the taking, without coming across as preachy.

I have to mention the idea of invisibility that we find in the marginalized: homeless, lost souls, and outcasts. Neverwhere socks you in the stomach with the reality that those outcasts are ignored, forgotten, invisible. There are many horror-filled moments and grossness in this book, but the true scariness and horror come when Richard Mayhew dares to help someone in need, someone most wouldn’t even notice, and in turn he becomes no longer visible, no longer a ‘person’ to the mainstream masses of humanity. But this turned out to be his lucky day. Richard finally finds truth, bravery, friendship, and honor when he falls through the cracks and tumbles into the underbelly of London.

And you have to love a book that ends a chapter with a tribute to the great Agatha Christi: “And then there were none.” Was this intentional? I don’t know, but I hope so.

Neverwhere is so wonderful, I can only gush and blubber its praises. The ending paragraph gave me chills of happiness and relief.

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“Who do you think she is——the Wizard of Oz? We can’t send you home. This is your home.” ~ chapter 19

“‘Richard——this is reality. Get used to it. It’s all there is. See you on Monday.'” ~ chapter 20

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What do you think?

My Goodreads

2 Replies to “Book Impressions: Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman”

  1. I really liked ‘Neverwhere’ and although I have not read anything else by Gaiman, I believe I will give them a go sometime soon (although I’m not a big fantasy reader.) One thing that struck me about this book was how offbeat and funny it was, Croup and Vandemar were the best! I was kind of bummed to see them get defeated in the end 🙁 Although it was for the best, they were mean sons of bitches and would have caused more trouble for Richard and his crew. Richard was a fun character but I kept getting struck by what a wuss he was in certain scenes, Could he really have defeated such evil wankers without getting offed by the conclusion? No. But it’s nice to dream. the ending went on for too long but the entertaining other portion of the book made up for it by far.

    Have you seen the TV special?

  2. You are so right about Croup and Vandemar. They are deliciously wicked and quite gruesome! I too thought Richard was weak and helpless most of the time, but that made his goodness and honesty stand out even more, such as when he helped Door at the beginning. His journey and development into an unlikely hero was more pronounced because he was so timid and wimpy. I cheered for him, even when I wanted to smack him!
    The Marquis de Carabas is my favorite character.
    I didn’t know there was a TV special. I may need to check that out.
    I love this book!